Yet another true story film being released during Oscar season, The Upside is a remake of a 2011 French film ‘The Intouchables’. Telling the story of a paralysed billionaire who has an unlikely friendship with his new carer, an ex-convict on parole, the film's cliché narrative lets down what could be a great film with fantastic performances.
Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly return to our screens after appearing together last month in Holmes and Watson. A million miles away from that rubbish pile, they this time appear as Hollywood’s great comedy double act. Telling the story of Laurel and Hardy’s final tour together, Stan & Ollie is a beautifully sentimental tale of friendship and love.
Adam McKay is quickly becoming the one of the most unique writer/directors currently working. After creating classic comedies like ‘Anchorman’, ‘Step Brothers’ and ‘The Other Guys’, he turned his attention to more serious topics with ‘The Big Short’, using his comedy background to make the 2008 Financial Crisis entertaining. This time, McKay turns his attention to the White House during the Bush/Cheney administration, and it’s no overstatement to say that he has created a satirical masterpiece.
Yorgos Lanthimos is known for his surrealist sensibilities. Other hits like ‘The Lobster’ (2014) and ‘The Killing of a Sacred Deer’ (2017) have shown his love for the bizarre and farcical. Here, he turns this twisted vision on the court of Queen Anne, and creates a hilarious political melodrama of power plays and jealousy.
A remarkable cast utterly wasted in a truly unfunny and misguided film. The cinema was so quiet when the ‘jokes’ happened, you could actually hear Sir Arthur Conan Doyle turning in his grave. Do Not Watch.
Mary Poppins, made in 1964, is practically perfect in every way. It is the jewel in Disney’s live action crown, and is rightfully regarded as one of the best films ever made. Naturally, in today’s modern saturated movie market, a long overdue sequel was made. While Mary Poppins doesn’t begin to eclipse the original, it gives it a damn good try.
Green Book tells the true-life story of African-American pianist Don Shirley, and Tony Vallelonga, his bodyguard and driver during a two-month tour of the deep south. A story of acceptance, understanding and love, the film uses a hilarious comic tone to underplay the powerful statement against racism, and is a triumph in both respects.
Re-releasing Deadpool 2 as a PG-13 festive comedy sounded like a fun idea. Marketing showed Deadpool kidnapping Fred Savage before reading him the bedtime story of Deadpool 2 in a running joke about the premise of The Princess Bride. This interesting premise did not work, and in fact was just a shameless money maker that … Continue reading Festive Re-Release is a Cynical Flop (Once Upon a Deadpool review)
It’s rare to see a film debut as this, but Boots Riley’s absurdist dark comedy is just that. Telling the story of a young African American telemarketer who speaks in a ‘white voice’ to sell to his clients, it’s themes, tone and ideas are utterly bizarre and pretty original. If Black Mirror was to make an fuelled movie, this would be it.
It’s always going to be a bold claim to make after the hugely successful Infinity War coming out, but Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is the best superhero movie of 2018. Infinity War, with it’s exciting scenes and bold ending, was still fairly by the numbers. Huge CGI action and a dreadful subplot about Thor’s axe brought it down in my rankings. This, however, is such a powerful film, with amazing humour, incredible design and heartbreaking emotion.